The Slatest

“Herbal” Cough Syrup Recalled Because Its Secret Ingredient Is Morphine

Master Herbs’ website.


So, the Food and Drug Administration has announced that a company called Master Herbs Inc. is recalling its herbal “Licorice Coughing Liquid” on account of the small matter that it turns out to be made of sweet, sweet morphine:

Pomona, CA, Master Herbs, Inc. is voluntarily recalling ALL LOTS of Licorice Coughing Liquid, cough syrup in 100 ml bottles to the consumer level. This product has been found to contain morphine, which is an opioid, and it is not declared on the label. Opioid is an ingredient of Compound Camphor. Compound Camphor is declared on the label of the product, but not its ingredients.


It’s funny that the press release—written by the company and issued via the FDA—makes it sound like the problem is, like, a labeling mishap rather than having made an “herbal” product out of sweet, sweet morphine, but hey, whatever gets the job done.

Master Herbs has a fun website, as it happens, which includes blank pages labeled with the enigmatic titles “Free Dispensing Cabinet” and “Free Specimen;” there’s also a section that lists “downward flow of damp-heat” as a symptom of sexual dysfunction. (Although that doesn’t really sound like sexual dysfunction, does it? Anyway, let’s end this post.)